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Communist leaders meet in Cuba today

Communist leaders are due to meet in Havana today for their annual economic conference, their first outside Europe. The Cuban hosts are expected to press their arguments for more aid to the less-developed members of the 10-nation alliance.

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Diplomats said the three-day meeting of Comecon (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance) would center on the perennial dispute between the Soviet Union, which wants a more integrated structure, and some of its allies intent on maintaining a degree of economic independence. The USSR also wants its allies to invest more in the search for oil since they rely almost entirely on Moscow for their energy needs. And how Comecon can best compete with the West in high technology products will be high on the agenda as well.

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